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The biggest stars in sport who declared Lionel Messi the GOAT over Cristiano Ronaldo

The biggest stars in sport who declared Lionel Messi the GOAT over Cristiano Ronaldo

The debate has been answered plenty of times.

Every football fan has an opinion on the Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo debate which has raged for the past 15 years.

The two greatest footballers of their generation, Messi and Ronaldo supporters will vehemently defend their favourite players at every occasion, while others might go more neutral and urge for both stars to be appreciated equally.

Either way, the Messi vs Ronaldo battle will be endless, with future generations viewing it in the same way as the 1966 battle between Pele, Eusebio and Bobby Charlton was by older generations.

High-profile names from around the world of sport - not necessarily just football - have given their views on the GOAT debate, with many choosing Ronaldo over Messi.

Here are just some of the names who declared Messi instead to be the football GOAT.

Wayne Rooney

There's no better way to start the list than a classic of the 'Wayne Rooney tweets circa 2010-2013' genre.

"Messi is a joke. For me the best ever," the Manchester United legend wrote.

Luka Modric

In what was perhaps a controversial pick, given he was Ronaldo's team-mate at Real Madrid for six years, Luka Modric called Messi 'the best player in history' during the 2022 World Cup.

He said: "Hopefully Messi wins this World Cup. He is the best player in history and he deserves it." Messi did, of course, win it with Argentina.

Trent Alexander-Arnold

The Liverpool star also went with Messi.

In an interview with talkSPORT during the same World Cup as above, Alexander-Arnold said: "Nothing needs to be said. The best player ever. As he's getting older, it's still magic to watch him.

"He's something that I don't think I'll ever see again."

Arsene Wenger

Iconic Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger was famed for his incredible predictions for players - but he had already given his definitive verdict on Messi's place among the best on the planet when the Barcelona legend was 22 years of age.

Beth Mead

Arsenal star and Euro 2022 golden boot winner Beth Mead made her feelings clear on Messi in a post on X (Twitter) during the World Cup - referring to him simply as the GOAT.

Jan Oblak

Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak was the recipient of a bottle of Budweiser that was sent to every goalkeeper that Messi scored against as part of a promotional campaign.

Still, the Slovenia international thinks Messi is the greatest.

He told Goal: "With Messi I have always said it. He is spectacular. He is the highest level. For me, he is the best."

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

In 2016, the Swedish maverick dubbed Messi the greatest ever - and described how he is different to Ronaldo in one key area.

He explained: "I think Messi is one of a kind. What he's doing, I don't know if we will ever see another player do the things that he does.

"It is different [with Ronaldo] because he is the result of hard training. It is not natural."

Andy Murray

Away from football, and the greatest British male tennis player of all time paid tribute to the great Argentinian.

"Is Messi the best athlete of all time?" he wrote on X (Twitter). "Forget just football. What a man."

Featured Image Credit: Getty / Piers Morgan Uncensored

Topics: Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney, Luka Modric, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Zlatan Ibrahimovic